Tomorrow marks a bittersweet day for us as a church as we say goodbye to the McCurley’s dear foster daughter due to her being reunited with her family. It is a bitter day as this beautiful child has become such a beloved person in our church. She first came in March at just a few months old and it has been amazing to watch her grow this past year. Our hearts are sad to see her go and especially sad to see our friends Caleb and Jessie grieve. They have showered Italy with love and truly treated her like a daughter. She was their first child as they started fostering her just a few months after being married. As a parent, I just can’t imagine the heartbreak that they are going through. We are going to be weeping with their weeping.
Yet, while this is a bitter day it is also sweet. It is sweet to think about this little girl being reunited with her biological family. It is sweet to think of the memories that we have been privileged to have with her. Most of all, this is sweet because of the example that Caleb and Jessie are as a reminder of God’s heart to care for the orphan. As any childhood development specialist will tell you, the first year of a child’s life is crucially important as they learn what it means to be attached to a person. If orphaned children are not taken in through foster care, but just bounce from facility to facility, they often do not develop the vital skill of attachment and become relationally handicapped for their entire lives. When I was talking to Caleb about how he was doing as he heard the news of his foster daughter having to go home he said, “We wanted to risk our hearts being broken through giving her our love, so that she would learn what love is and never have her heart be broken.” What a powerful example of self sacrificial love. Could there be a better picture of what God’s heart is for us? He was willing to be broken, so that we would not have to be.
It is one thing to read about foster parenting. It is another thing to see it walked out in front of your eyes. I am proud to have friends like Caleb and Jessie. I am grateful to have their example as part of Christ Church. While we all can’t be directly involved in caring for orphans through foster care or adoption, may we all be involved through our continual prayers, care and support for these heroic families.
God bless you Christ Church
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